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One of the founding fathers of the American Farrier’s Association received a new honor recently, when Walt Taylor of Albuquerque, N.M., was named “Best Friend of the Farrier,” during the 39th annual Mule Days Celebration in Bishop, Calif.
It was a fitting honor for Taylor, who has been a Mule Days fixture since he was asked to judge the event’s mule-shoeing contest in 1993. He’s been to just about every Mule Days Celebration since, and told officials, “As long as I am able, I won’t miss another.”
According to a story that appeared in the event’s program, Taylor has placed in both the Over-Age-50 Beauty Shoeing Contest as well as in the Mule Shoeing Speed Contest. Ironically, he chose to enter the latter contest after he had already entered the 50-and-over event. He was in both events again this year, taking ninth in the speed event and second in the over 50.
Taylor has also received a sportsmanship award for helping Mule Days as a timer, steward and wrangler for all the shoeing contests.
“Walt has done more for farriers and equines around the world than any other person, literally more than any other man,” said Lee Green, the Yucaipa, Calif., farrier who is another fixture of Mule Days.
Taylor let Mule Days organizers know he was honored by their recognition.
“I think it’s one of the greatest honors I’ve ever had, because it comes from people I?respect,” he said. “Of all the people they could have chosen, well, I?was…